Tourist Cancel Elgon Park Trips due to Mudslides

Tourists have shunned Mt. Elgon National Park after the August and September mudslides ravaged parts of Mt. Elgon, according to the park’s statistics for the months.

The Mt. Elgon visitor survey figures indicated that although August and September are peak seasons for tourists at the mountain, groups of tourists cancelled their visits to the mountain fearing they could be victims.

According to Mt. Elgon Conservation area manager Mr. Adonia Bintorwa, a total of 10 groups comprising 46 visitors cancelled their bookings.

The report noted that most of the foreign tourists who comprise nearly 90 per cent of the park’s visitors, kept away. Mr. Bintorwa said visitors pay $500 (Shs1.4m) per person and comprise foreign students on holiday, local students, scouts and local residents.

The main tourist attractions for the Mount Elgon hikers on Uganda safaris include the wildlife, hot springs, caves, waterfalls and the Wagagai peak that stands at 4,321 metres above sea level.

The plight of at least 6,000 people living in the mudslide-prone areas remains uncertain as the Uganda government insists they must move into camps as it looks for a lasting solution.

Geographical experts have blamed poor farming methods and over-cultivation of land by residents on the mountain, causing it to weigh down.

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